Watch the Oklahoma State University football game online to be entertained by the Cowboy Marching Band. Just like the Cowboy football tradition, the band can trace its beginning well back more than a century ago. In fact, it was 1905 that a student of the school then known as Oklahoma A&M College started the band. Harry Dunn is credited with the start of the Cowboy Marching band tradition a full two years before Oklahoma was granted statehood in 1907.
Dunn wanted to form a band that represented he school at its athletic events as well as other occasions where playing music would be appropriate. The first 22 band members had to supply their own instruments, uniforms, sheet music and other equipment needed to perform. They also had to individually chip in to pay a small part of the band director’s fee. That band director p a Mr. Wood – also played his coronet n the first ever Cowboy marching Band. In 1910, as was the case with many college bands, the OSU band came under the military department that began supplying uniforms and equipment along with many instruments so the band could not only play at football games, but also at ROTC events.
One “big” tradition associated with the Cowboy Marching Band was introduction of the “Big Spirit Drum.” It was purchased by the ROTC in 1933. It was a special order item that was 6 foot, 1 inch in diameter. At that time, it was considered the largest drum in the world. It was 24 inches deep and dubbed the “Spartan,” by the manufacturer, Leedy Drum Co. The same drum today is now the fourth largest in the country. It was placed upon a large four-wheeled cart that also carried the drummer and a cymbal player.